Buying a Used Car in Singapore
I started learning the intricacies of second-hand car pricing when I started shopping for my own car recently. Probably as a legacy of my Wharton education, I am incapable of making any major financial decision without a spreadsheet, and so I got to work studying the tax structure for cars in Singapore, and trying to work out what kind of car would fit my budget. It’s a very simple question really, but a fair bit of work. You know much you are being charged for the car, but how much do you get back when you sell/scrap it? Then divide the difference by the term of ownership to work out the annual cost (mainly the depreciation, road tax and fuel costs). There are other calculators out there that help to work out things like how much the car loan will cost, but I was more concerned with the immediate question: which car is the best value of money?
I put all that I had learned into a simple Android App. This is the app I had tried to find while buying my own car and was shocked that none existed. So I resorted to spreadsheets first. It is such a simple thing, but no one has done it; so after buying my car I decided to build it myself. Because LTA has been unwilling to release any test data to me (citing privacy concerns), I had to resort to going from car to car in Turf City, comparing the calculations. After more than 1000 users tried it, so far so good!
See also the tutorial for more details on the Car-culator including screenshots and a quick description of how to use it.
You may also wish to try the latest version of Car-culator, which works on any browser on your phone or computer. It is still included among the suite of tools provided by CarIQ that is still under development, but already has all the features of the first version, and many more including the ability to import a listing from sgcarmart or oneshift, and to save your favourite cars for comparison shopping. Comments, feedback and suggestions on how to make it better are welcome at the release page (please don’t post them here), which also contains the tutorial on how to use it.